Under The Mind's Watch
Edited by John Nolan and Alan J Clark
Published by Peter Lang, 2004
US ISBN 0-8204-6978-5
The mind's watch is the watch of words. Under the mind's watch of words, there must be no more of their meaning what the variant
self wishes them to mean: words must mean according to the generous law of the real, the principle of the unity of meanings
wherever or by whomever words are honestly uttered. (The universality of meanings is the inspiration of language, the soul
of being is in this).
The mind's vigilance is a kindness. By it, human beings can dispense with the special `truths' with which they crown themselves
as favored with a special sense of the true. All the words, phrases, sentences, chapters, that in their variety minister variously
to self-satisfaction in the human multitude may resound over and over in a composite public mind; but this mind, and its truths
on truths, will prove to belong to no one, and all that resounds in it will over and over die away. The mind of each owns
the private silences. They are for breaking with the speaking of the sense of each, equal, by language's equalness to itself
when the mind stands guard and requires of words truth, the invariable.
From Under The Mind's Watch, page 145
If we are all of one breed, as the name ‘human’ hypothesizes, and this is the breed of creatures that can achieve by exchanges
of mind one understanding, as our being makers of words to mean our meaning to one another claims for us, should you not be
to me, each one of you, each one of us besides myself, as one of my own? And should I not be to each one of you as one of
your own? Each one of us be to us as one of our own? Are we not all one another’s own? If we are of one breed, and the breed is this breed of minds? If in our being we mean, each, a same being? If the meaning of
each, in the being of each, is the meaning of each other one of us? If the meaning of all is each one’s own meaning?
If we are born of the line that descends from the one-minded infinity of one, which broke itself, for love of what might be
the same and be also and also, into a universe: and rises into bodily search for mind finite – the meaning of being, whole
and in essence, having self in minds?
One startles, perceiving oneself to stand to another one as possessed in a kinship of being as the other’s own! Is this a
fragment of the human miracle left over from its slow explosion into commonplaces of partial grace of being and partial accursedness
in being with only partial grace of being, as the breed sorted itself into the like and the different, and into all the differences
in likeness, and all the like-nesses in difference?
Is it a triumph of chance amidst growing lack on lack of agreement of the growing sum of us with the grand total of the meaning
of ‘human’ borne in the being of each of us – the sum of this simplicity?
What shall one believe of us all, finding oneself as another’s own, and that other as one’s own? Should there be a twice or
thrice of such finding, or other count, to set against naught, the meaning of us all would still be naught until all were
countable into its simplicity.
To believe in naught as the human believable so long as the breed does not cease to waste itself in maintaining the self-bequeathing,
self-inheriting, quantity ‘humanity’, physically meaningless addition to physical nature: the first lesson to be learned by
who would believe under the mind’s watch is, to do without the consolations of believing in more than belief can hold within
a commitment not to favor the dear wish, the suffering hope. Should one of us be to another as that other’s own, and that
other be to that one as that one’s own, these will not have come into being in vain: the experiment of vesting the meaning
of being in the self-named breed ‘human’ will have proved itself justified in that instance. What then? Where do such instances
have place? Within the secret world of the watching mind, which only all of the breed of us become one hand, one key, one desire to know
the meaning of us, can unlock to all of us.
Copyright © by the Laura (Riding) Jackson Board of Literary Management